Demko’s absence leaves ‘huge hole’ for Comets

Sports

Don’t expect to see Thatcher Demko suit up for the Comets anytime soon.

He’s currently in the concussion protocol and there is no timetable for his return to the ice.

“It’s out of my control,” head coach Trent Cull said.  “I can’t do anything about it and I just wish him the best.  We’re hoping for a speedy recovery for him and for our team.”

Demko is in Utica working his way back, but Cull is making sure to give him space.

“When guys have concussions, the last thing they want to do is have everybody come up to them and ask how they feel,” Cull said.  “That makes them feel worse.”

With Demko out of the picture for the foreseeable future, the Comets will have to find a way to get it done without their record setting netminder.

“Do we miss Thatcher?  Absolutely,” Cull said.  “That creates a huge hole for us.  He’s a fantastic goalie at this level and a really huge piece of our backbone, our defense.”

Behind Demko, the Comets have veteran Richard Bachman and 21-year-old Ivan Kulbakov.

“Bachman has played in the AHL forever and Kulbakov is a young guy on his way up,” Cull said.  “I’m excited about having them.  They’re both good goaltenders and that’s who we’re focused on right now.”

Bachman is ready for the challenge.

“It’s a good opportunity,” Bachman said.  “Whenever you get them, you never know how many you’re going to get so you want to take advantage of it.  Opening weekend is coming up and you want to get the season off on the right foot.  We have a tall task on Friday that we have to be prepared for.”

The Comets host the Marlies in the season opener, with faceoff from the Adirondack Bank Center set for 7pm.

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